Hiking the Fu-Ba Trail

So you wanna hike the Fu-Ba National Trail? Well, there is not a lot of info out there on how to do this practically. Just about a paragraph or two in the main guide books about Taiwan. I just got back from hiking this trail and this is how I recommend doing it if you don’t have your own transport and do not make any reservations in advance. There will be some things that are missing from this and if anyone wants to add additional info, please do so. There are a few questions I still have myself.

I hiked the trail going from Lalashan forest park (actually started in Shang Baling) to Fushan. This includes my perspective on how to do it the other way around, from Fushan to Lalashan too.

I took the bus from Daxi and despite what it says on the board at the bus station, the bus does not leave at 9:50am, but it leaves at 11:30am. It takes about an hour and a half to two hours to get to Shang Baling (Upper Baling.) For accomodation, there are a bunch of B&B places around, and the one mentioned in the guide book “Magic World Country House” is quite a ways down the road from the main town area of Shang Baling. Doesn’t make much sense to stay there unless you have your own transport or want you to walk even longer to get to the forest park.

Fortunately, there is a reasonably priced hotel that is more than decent in the building that is adjacent to the fire station in the “town” area of Shang Baling. The bus pretty much drops you off right there. It cost me $1200 for the night and it was a Saturday. It only has a sign in Chinese. This is still a little ways from the forest area. To get to the forest area, it is a hike to the entrance, about 5-6 kilometers, uphill, and then from the entrance, it’s about another three kilometers to get to the exhibition center inside the park where the trails start for viewing the trees, the stuff you actually want to see.

To get to the forest area from Shang Baling, you can walk, but it takes a while. I did see a couple taxis going around though. Also, in the morning, I was making my way up there a little after 9am and a bus came around the corner and I waved it down and hopped on. It was only 25 NT and it dumps you off at the entrance for the forest park, so it was still another 3km to the part of the park that you want to see. I have no idea what the schedule is for that bus, or if it was the same bus that comes from Daxi. There wasn’t a number on the bus and it was all in Chinese. Does anyone have any info on this bus or know its schedule? After I got off, the driver just stayed near the entrance and probably waited for people to come back down and left at a certain time.

There are a bunch of other places to stay further up the road on the way to the forest park. I don’t know if any of those are regular hotels, they look mostly like B&Bs and probably cost a lot. Does anyone know any other regular hotels in the area?

So to get to the forest park area from Shang Baling, the options are: one of a couple taxis around (but they seem quite spotty), the random bus, walking or trying to hitch a ride. I even had some nice Taiwanese people offer me rides up to the park while I was hiking up.

Before you go on the trail, you should go to the police station and get a mountain permit (ru shan.) It’s free and you don’t really need anything special, just fill out a form. The police station is right next to the fire station, so it’s right next to the hotel I previously mentioned. The police officer there is actually quite friendly. I wasn’t even asked to see my ARC or passport, but there is a section on the form that asks for your ID number, ie passport or ARC.

In order to get to the trail, you have to go through a section of the forest park that is closed off. There are little maps all over the place in the forest park area with all the ancient trees. You can see a little yellow dashed line going out of the forest area on the map and that is the Fu-Ba trail. If you follow the map, you can find it easily. But again, the area where the trail head is is currently closed. I don’t know why, I walked around in the area and there was nothing wrong, and it didn’t even look like they were doing work. I just went through there anyway; nobody even tried to stop me. It’s really a shame, because the parts they have blocked off area the best areas of the park. I just don’t know why they are doing this right now.

Once you’re on the trail it’s another 17km until you reach the other side in Fushan. The trail is very easy to follow. It can take up to six hours. I did it in five in rainy weather. That should have slowed me down, but it was rainy and cold and I was hauling ass to get it done quickly and took minimal breaks. There are many more huge ancient trees and other beautiful sights along the way. Unfortunately, there aren’t any signs here like in the forest park to tell you how old and tall they are. If you want to hike up to Lalashan, there is a part where you can do it. It is a steep climb, with ropes to pull yourself up on. When I went, it was raining and very slick, I wasn’t even going to attempt it. It looks quite precarious as it is, and in the rain, it’s almost certainly a death trap. There are also signs pointing to other trails along the way which I don’t know anything about. Does anyone have any info on those trails?

Along the trail at the half way point, 8.5 kilometers in, there is a good campsite. There are other places to camp, and it’s obvious where others have made camp from the charred wood and trash strewn about on the trail. Is it legal to have a campfire on the trail? And obviously, you just need to bring back out whatever you brought in. It makes me sick to see trash strewn about in a place that is supposed to be pristine.

At the end of the trail, there is the suspension bridge and you’re in Fushan. There is almost nothing in Fushan. One cafe, one restaurant, and that’s about it. No taxis, no hotels, no shops. It’s 17km to get to Wulai. I was only able to make it to Wulai since some nice Taiwanese people gave me a ride. I walked up to them casually asking to point me in the direction of Wulai. They said it was 17km away and that there were no taxis. I got lucky with this one, or it would have been another 17km to walk that day. You could probably find somewhere to pitch a tent if you wanted to camp and then head up the road the next day. Or if your Chinese is good and you know a taxi company in Wulai and are willing to pay the likely exorbitant fare, you might be able to get a cab. Either that, or bring along your Marty McFly hoverboard.

At about the 5-6km marker on the road to Wuali there is the police station. Make sure to check in here so the police know that you’ve made it out alive.

Now, for doing it the other way around, this is how I imagine doing it based on my experience.

First off, from what I read and experienced on the trail, it will take longer to go from Fushan to the Lalashan forest area. It is slightly up hill, although some portions in the beginning will be steeper and more treacherous to cross. It can take 8-10 hours to hike the 17km from Fushan to Lalashan from what I have read, and this does seem accurate.

To get to Fushan, the only real way to do it would be having your own transport, or getting a taxi from Wulai. You would have to wake up pretty damn early to be able to get there to allow yourself enough time. I would recommend staying at a hotel in Wulai and waking up early to do this. I haven’t found much info about regular hotels in Wulai. They all just seem to be the hot spring hotels which cost a lot. Anyone have info about regular hotels or other places to stay in Wulai? Is it possible to camp? I guess you could also go to Wulai the night before, get a taxi to Fushan, camp there for the night, wake up and hike.

Before you get on the trail, make sure to get your mountain permit (ru shan) from the police station which is at about the 5-6km marker coming from Wulai.

Then you cross the suspension bridge and you’re on the trail. It’s 17km until you reach Lalashan forest park. You are still a ways off from Shang Baling once you are at the end of the trail. However, it seems like you could camp out on the two large wooden decks that are right next to the trail head. You’re probably not supposed to do this, but it could be done in a pinch. Once the trail “ends” you still have to walk through the park. It’s a nice walk and not too long. Then you will reach the parking lot area near the exhibition center. You can try hitching a ride here, as it would be another 3km to the park entrance, and then even further back to town. You could walk the 3km to the park entrance and take the gamble that the aforementioned bus will be there or the off chance a taxi driver has nothing else to do and is waiting around for a fare. However, it wouldn’t be that bad to walk to town from here because it’s all downhill. If you are still hiking at dusk, just take proper precautions, reflective clothing, flashlight/lantern and you should be fine. It’s not that dangerous to walk down back to town at night on the road. There isn’t a lot of traffic, no hairpin curves that you can’t see around and there is enough space for you to walk on the side of the road safely and comfortably.

As for getting back to Taipei from Shang Baling, I have heard that there are buses that can take you to Taoyuan, and other places. I have no idea what the schedules are or where you would catch the bus. Does anyone have info on this? Which places can you go to that you can easily to back to Taipei from? Daxi would be another option, you can get back to Taipei from there, the 9103 takes you to Yongning, the end of the line on the MRT blue line.

It’s a very rewarding trip and can be done in one weekend if you manage your time efficiently and have the right information. Please if you have more info, fill in some of the gaps or add whatever you can. Also, if you have any questions, or comments, feel free to post. Happy hiking.

Thanks so much for the info! Any pics you can show? Is the trail easy to follow, any signs at forks for example? Any dangerous sections?

I haven’t even uploaded my pics on to my computer yet, but they likely didn’t turn out that well. It was extremely misty during the hike on the trail and I don’t think the pics turned out that well. I just have a basic point and shoot digital camera. We’ll see though, hopefully some turned out well, or look extra cool BECAUSE of the mist. If I have some good ones, I will post at a later time.

The trail is very easy to follow. At all forks in the road, there are signs telling you to where each path goes. I can’t read much Chinese, but I just looked at my guide book and made sure the characters for Fushan matched up to the ones on the sign. There are also the little hiking flags tied to tree branches along the trail to keep you pointed in the right direction.

There are some sections that are a little dangerous. If you are starting in Fushan, toward the beginning there are some sections that look like a landslide covered them. However, once you get closer you can see that there is still a path to follow. A lot of these sections have you going through little waterfalls/streams. As long as you take your time, and are careful it’s not that dangerous. Also, I don’t remember any of these sections looking like they would be dangerous if you fell. There are some signs posted before these written in Chinese, I imagine they are warnings.

However, there are many sections that have extremely steep drop offs, that if you fell you would have no chance of clawing your way back up. Just be careful around these areas. No sections get too narrow though, so it’s still very safe. I was hauling ass and it was wet and still didn’t have any close calls or anything. But certain sections I did make sure to take my time because of this. There are some sections that have ropes on the wall for this and also there are some bridges that seem a little precarious. I personally don’t think any of it is that dangerous since I have experienced much worse. If you’ve never really hiked before, you might think it’s dangerous.

Also, as when hiking just about anywhere, keep your eyes at least halfway on the ground! It is tempting to look around at the scenery but you run the risk of losing your footing or stepping somewhere you don’t want to step!

The gate just before the ridge crest is probably to make sure day trippers don’t wander off and get lost The campfire and trash remains on the trail are probably from local hunters. They wait around til nightfall before looking around for flying squirrel, and the woodsmoke keeps the bugs at bay.
One of the path junctions you saw was probably at the crest of the ridge where the weather station is.That is the ridge trail that goes all the way to SongLuo lake. The side turn to LaLaShan also has another ridge path and a back route to FuFuShan - both very rough trails. For hikers looking for further thrills off the Northern Cross-Island Hwy., I recommend FuFuShan. It’s a very worthwhile hike with a good view at the top. Most hikers get there from the side road before BaLing going up to the farms just below it. No public transport there, however.

There are buses at 9.30 am and 1.30 pm going from Siang Baling to Daxi in Taoyuan County. There are plenty of buses from Daxi going to Taipei, TaoYuan, ChongLi and other places.

There is the gate right where the trail starts. It is well marked and tells you that it is the trail. However, I was not referring to that as the part that is blocked off. In the Lalashan forest area, the path that leads to the gate is taped off. You are not supposed to go through there, as well as other significant portions of the wooden paths that go along the area with all the signs telling you info about all the old trees. For some reason, they have a lot of these sections blocked off. But don’t let it deter you. There isn’t anything dangerous there and no one will stop you. They even have the best part, IMO, “the fallen tree over the weltering water”, blocked off.

It’s been a number of years since I last hiked this route, so the following info may not be quite accurate. That out of the way, there are a couple of things that can make this trip easier.

  1. The last stop on the bus line from Daxi is at the gate of the forest park (Linbankou). You don’t need to disembark at Shang Baling.
  2. There’s an excellent camping site at the weather station just a few km beyond the trees. This makes a good starting point for four highly rewarding hikes:
    Weather station - Lalashan - Lupei - Nancha - Xiao Wulai
    Weather station - Tamanshan - Meigueiximoshan
    Weather station - Lalashan - Fufushan
    Weather station - Tamanshan - Shang Baling
  3. There are very well-run campsites with hot showers and electricity for NT300/night at the trailheads of Tamanshan and Fufushan. The latter also has wifi.
  4. Years ago you could camp in the classrooms of the school in Fushan for NT$100. Hiking groups would overnight here in order to get an early start on the Fuba or Beicha routes.
  5. It’s possble to hike between Fushan and Lalashan in half a day. Departing at five should enable you to make the weather station by noon. I’d advise walking it over two days, but it is possible if pressed for time.
  6. Buses depart Linbankou for Daxi at 13:30 and 15:30.
  7. Fresh, farmed trout can be purchased in Kala and Xuewunao. Not sure about Fushan.

I hiked from Fushan to Baleng in ideal conditions and it took me under 8 hours, about 7.5, and I am no super athlete or anything.

If you see garbage on the trail, please pack it out! :bow:

Thanks for all the useful info! Only, it seems no one has written their ideas on the best way to get to Fushan. The only times I’ve been up there, I’ve cycled, and it really is a tiny, isolated place. Once, several years ago, I actually cycled up with my backpack on, hiked up to Kuaishan, and camped there for a night, but of course I couldn’t have hiked on through to Baling because I needed to retrieve my bike. Also, cycling with a full pack is really not fun.

Speaking of trails from Fushan, how about the one that goes east along the Nanshi River through the Hapen nature reserve (哈盆自然保留區)? I seem to recall seeing signs near Fushan for the “Kalamoji Trail” (卡拉莫基步道, I think); I wonder if that’s the same.

Man, I haven’t hiked in ages. I really should get off the bike and give myself a little variety.

When I did it, I arranged an early morning taxi in advance from Taipei. It was a bit expensive but did the job.

You could arrange pick up at Hsindian MRT station.

From Hsindian to Fushan probably costs about 800 NT.

[quote=“chung”]It’s been a number of years since I last hiked this route, so the following info may not be quite accurate. That out of the way, there are a couple of things that can make this trip easier.

  1. The last stop on the bus line from Daxi is at the gate of the forest park (Linbankou). You don’t need to disembark at Shang Baling. [/quote]

Thanks for adding some valuable info. I stopped in Shang Baling because I wanted to find a hotel. In retrospect, it would probably be easier to take the bus to the entrance of the park and hike the 3km up to the exhibition center and the forest. Only thing is you’d have to shlep around whatever you’re carrying with you, but it does save some serious time and effort getting to the entrance all the way from Shang Baling.

Haokaiyang, the Kalamoji Trail and the Hapen Old Trail are one and the same. FYI, there are a couple of other trails in the area. About 8kms in, the Hapen Trail reaches a junction. The left path, the main Hapen Old Trail, climbs steeply up to a ridge and then down to Fushan Botanical Reserve. If you do that without a permit, I’m not sure what reception you might get as it’s been more than 10 years since I did that but since I was leaving and not coming in, no one paid attention. The other path continues to follow the river a little way to a campsite. There used to be a path following the small side river on the left that also goes into the FuShan Botanical Reserve, but it looked overgrown a year ago when I was last there. Most of that route involves wading in the winding and very beautiful stream. Back at the campsite, the main branch of the river can be seen, head south wading along this river for about a kilometer, on the left bank as you look upstream, an untagged path goes all the way to DaTong village in YiLan County. This path is used by local hunters and there are a couple of shelters. I met several guys from DaTong while using their hut one night, and they said they take visitors on nature rambles around there sometimes.

Back at Fushan village, there is also a hiking route to BeiChaTianShan that’s tagged and fairly easy to follow and the Old SiaoWulai trail which crosses the same ridge a bit further south and is very difficult to follow with not many tags. Those are the cross-county routes that begin in and around FuShan village that I’ve done and there are two others I haven’t done yet.

Lynnie, the circuit route of Fushan - Tamanshan - Meigueiximoshan - Chakenshan - Fushan also looks promising (福山→塔曼山→玫瑰西魔山→茶墾山→福山). Have you had a chance to venture down the trail between Meigueiximoshan and Chakenshan? How about the hunter’s path down into the valley near the Lalashan turn off?

For those that can overlook poor camera skills, there are images of some of the places mentioned in this thread on my flickr page:

keepon.com.tw/UploadFile/Fil … 004%7D.jpg

Hi Chung, nice pics of MeiGueiXiMoshan - very atmospheric. By the way, did you river trace XiBuCiao stream? If so, how far up? I’ve hiked from MeiGueiXiMoShan along the ridge to SongLor Hu, but the route from MeiGueiXiMoShan to FuShan is one of the routes I haven’t done, but it’s definitely on my list! My plan for that is to go up from MingShyr or via JienShan on the North Cross-Island Hwy. It’s been tricky to get a good weather forecast that close to YiLan recently.

On the other hand, just across the valley floor from LaLaShan, I did a route: HuLiShan - YuFongShan - SueiBaiShan - Mandarin Duck Lake - LengShan back in October, and that was a great experience. I also went to FuFuShan via GaoYi, but the route is overgrown higher up, so I had to bushwhack through some dense bamboo to reach a farm road that joined the mountain road to FuFuShan trail head. From behind FuFuShan, I took the direct route to Siang Baling and had some glorious views.

None of these routes are marked correctly or at all on the Sun River 1: 50,000 series.

I didn’t get very far up the river. Had a bit of a swim and brief look around while the laoban over at the farm gutted my fish. :lick:

With a full pack the route over Jianshan could be a bit of a challenge, especially the section past the peak that drops into the dense cloud forest below Babokulushan. Lots of slave work in that part of the trail. The walk along the forest road past Mingchih is surely easier. However, the steep section after the junction with its massive stumps isn’t particularly scenic.

[quote=“Jah Lynnie”]On the other hand, just across the valley floor from LaLaShan, I did a route: HuLiShan - YuFongShan - SueiBaiShan - Mandarin Duck Lake - LengShan back in October, and that was a great experience. I also went to FuFuShan via GaoYi, but the route is overgrown higher up, so I had to bushwhack through some dense bamboo to reach a farm road that joined the mountain road to FuFuShan trail head. From behind FuFuShan, I took the direct route to Siang Baling and had some glorious views.

None of these routes are marked correctly or at all on the Sun River 1: 50,000 series.[/quote]

The eastern section of the The Huli - Lengshan ridge has been on my list for years. Suiebaishan, Sicousihshan, Tangsueishan and Lengshan make up the last pieces of my Beihen 20 puzzle.
Maybe this will be the year! :laughing:
There’s another trail next to Fufushan campground that goes down the slope toward Zhong Baling. It may even meet the narrow forest road that finishes just past the visitor’s center on Baleng Rd. When the sun comes out I’ll have a look to see if the road and trail actually meet.

Anyone up for a Sunday walk from Fufushan campground to Lalashan?

I’ll pass on the FuFuShan to LaLaShan hike, thanks, because I’ve done it before. It’s a bit rough. I think most people just go up and back to FuFuShan. Carrying on to LaLaShan might take another 4 or 5 hours, but judging by the times people are claiming to do the Fu-Ba route, I guess I’m a bit of a slowcoach.

I’m interested in the route you mentioned that goes from FuFuShan campground to Zhong Baling. When I took the route from GaoYi I kept an eye out for any trail going off to the right, but didn’t see one. If you find any further intel on this trail, let me know please. There is, of course, a tagged path going from about half a kilometer behind the peaks down through some tea farms across the bridge and up to Siang Baling, but that’s clearly marked on the Sun River map. Presumably, you’re referring to something else?

Over the other side of the North Cross-Island Hwy, at the back of Galahe, I have a plan to bag DongCouSiShan and SiCiouSiShan, the only two peaks I haven’t climbed on that range, and I’d go via TangSueishan and end up back in Galahe via SueiBaiShan. That would need four days and a good weather forecast, and a big water haul. By the way, there isn’t a tagged path to SueiBaiShan from YuFongShan, so that route is out despite being marked on the map. When I came up that way previously from HuLiShan, the path fizzled out and I had to bushwack for a while before I intercepted with the path from Smangus.i wouldn’t want to try that going downhill though, it’s too easy to take the wrong ridgeline. The really epic view is from TangSueiShan, so to bag that in itself is good enough and there is the option of bailing off the ridge and coming down to the Forestry Road on the other side.

All in all, plenty of plans for 2013!

Chung, this may be of interest to you. Taking the road from BaLing to Siang Baling, after about 1km, there is a side road on the left blocked off by concrete road markers. Go down this side road and after about 100 meters there is a landslide that took out a section of the road but a path through the bamboo with handrails has been put in. This road is the route to FuFuShan I explored last weekend and which was mentioned in the above couple of posts. The road winds down, crosses a side stream passing a few farms here and there. The road goes on for about 5 kms switchbacking up the far slope eventually petering out just beyond the only farm shed with a street light! There were a few aboriginals about on their motorbikes checking their traps, so I wondered if their bikes were marooned because the only route in was blocked. At the end of the concrete road that winds through the highest orchard the route continues as a dirt road and then a path through the forest steeply climbing up. The path is untagged but reasonably clear although trail finding like this is easier on an uphill route. The path goes along a ridge between two headwater areas before veering left and contouring along climbing slowly up to the FuFuShan to LalaShan ridgeline finally joining the tagged route about 30 minutes east of the two FuFuShan peaks. Once on the main tagged route, turn left to go over the twin peaks of FuFuShan and down the other side to the trail head at FuFuShan campground. Turn right and the path goes on to another junction: go straight for LaLaShan and turn right to Siang Baling. There is no sign or any tags on the route I took and I suspect it’s used by hunters only. I took two days to do this route, the first day the road route, the second through the forest, over the peaks and down to the road. I stayed in an orchard shack with a magnificent view up the main valley of the North Cross-Island Hwy. I was also woken up at night by the nearby blast of a rifle as it seems the edge of an orchard offers a nice profile for flying squirrel hunters! I presume this is the route you were referring to as I didn’t see anything at the campground near the trailhead. The route coming from GaoYi is much lower down.

Mods, maybe you can separate and create a new thread beginning with Chung’s second post and title it ‘North Cross-Island Highway Hiking Trails’.

Lynnie, that indeed is the route. Well done for scouting this out! There also maybe another way round as I’m beginning to think that the last farm on the side road and the campground are getting water from the same source. The water line trail may even connect with the Kala trailhead as there are a number of hunting paths in that area. Oh, and my campaign to remove the nets from the ridge trail is now complete. It’s taken a couple of rounds of emails, but I’ve finally shamed the Forest Bureau to send crews to clean up the section from Kala to the campground - not sure if they’ve been removed from the Lalashan extention.

From discussions with the locals, I get the impression that the ridge has healthy resident populations of mountain goat, barking deer, and flying squirrel. I’ve noticed more frequent police patrols on the Fufushan side so perhaps hunters are concentrating their efforts off of Baleng Rd.

I usually spend at least one Sunday night a month up in Fufushan. One of my favorite walks this time of year is the hike up and over Husband for lunch at the trailhead in Kala. From the back of the field there is an almost completely unobstructed view of the snow capped Holy Ridge. :sunglasses:

Chung, hope this is of interest to you. During a recent burst of glorious weather and energy on my part, I saw an opportunity to get out on to the north cross-island highway and do a decent 4 day hike. The route began in Galahe (across the valley from Siang Baling) and I camped about an hour from the peak of SueiBaiShan (2444m) reaching the peak, after hiking through a substantial ‘shenmu’ area, early the next day. No view there, but further on at SiCiouSihShan peak (2476m) there is an excellent panorama of pure forest falling steeply away down the headwater valley. Most hikers take the lower trail to Mandarin Duck Lake, so this upper ridge path is less-travelled and unclear in spots, but fairly well-tagged. It looks like a couple of groups came through recently as there were some relatively new looking tags which made things a lot easier. The path goes along a few moderate ups and downs passing by DongCiouSihShan through some lovely forest until it reaches the trail junction with the Galahe to TangSueiShan path. Turn right and it’s another 40 minutes to the peak which has a marvelous view in all directions underlining it’s role as a verandah to look south upon the most northern ‘three thousanders’ such as TaoShan, DaBaJienShan and others about 20 kms away. From there I dropped down to the Forestry Road and stayed surreptitiously in the old tree viewing area overnight, encountering hunters in the middle of the night up to their usual shenanigans. Then I took the route out via a branch Forestry road to the trail head to LengShan and the steep trail down to the river and back up to the North Cross-Island Hwy. The path on the Sun River 1:50,000 scale map is marked wrongly here. The route actually crosses the river further west and about halfway up joins the path coming from SiLeng wild hot spring.

To do this in weekend size bites, I’d recommend doing it in three separate trips:
1.Lengshan up and back from the cross-island highway and ONLY if the water is low at the river crossing.
2.Galahe to TangSueishan and return. Camp somewhere on the mountain or camp at the end of the road and make a long day hike out of it.
3. Galahe to SueibaiShan on another path which starts at the same end of the road. Probably camp on the mountain, in order to push on and get to SiCiouSihShan and then return the same way. Alternatively, take the path to Smangus, but that would involve getting a ride out from there.

There is no water on any of the abovementioned trails beyond the river crossing points.

Thanks for posting the details on the walks. I’ve yet to tick off any of these peaks so the information on current conditions is much appreciated. My season thus far has been almost a complete bust. Between the never ending rain and work assignments,I’ve had precious little time out on the trail. I’d like to do Lengshan before the heat comes as I suspect the valley is unbearably humid in summer. As for the others: Is the trail out of Galahe to Sueibaishan tagged? Years back, Kurt had a real tough time keeping on the trail. Are clubs regularly covering this route? From your description it appears to be possible to do a loop starting at Galahe of Sueibaishan, SiCiouSihShan and TangSueishan. Am I correct to assume that this is tagged and fairly straight forward to follow? I noticed you didn’t touch on the other route to Sueibaishan via Yufengshan. Is this tagged or is it still a rough hunting trail? :notworthy:

Yes, the route from Galahe to SueiBaiShan is tagged, and didn’t present any route finding problems. It’s quite steep and, with no view at the peak, less popular than the other route to TangSueiShan. However, it has one of the best big tree areas to walk through at 1500 meters plus. Last year’s typhoons have caused a bit more tree debris, but fairly new tags indicate hiking groups commitment to the route. Is it worth doing? In my opinion, yes, but only if you press on to SiCiouSihShan with the good views or the whole loop including TangSueiShan or you plan to go on to Mandarin Duck Lake or Smangus.

The other route you asked about: YuFongShan to SueiBaiShan, I did some years ago. That trail is more challenging. About a kilometer from the SueiBaiShan peak, a path on the left dips down off the ridge and is another, lower, route to Galahe. Quite a good stretch of shenmu in there as it’s sheltered off the ridge. That’s where hunters are active. To get to SueiBaiShan, I followed the path on the main ridge but the path petered out, but at that point I could contour around, hit the path coming up from Smangus and use that to reach the peak. So, from YuFongshan it’s a little more challenging.

You asked about Galahe - SueiBaiShan - SiCiouSihShan - DongCiouSihShan - TangSueiShan - GalaHe. As I mentioned previously the route isn’t used by a lot of groups, but newish tags are placed at reasonably close intervals making it easy to follow, so some people have been through recently. The route down to Galahe from TangSueiShan is probably the most frequently used path in this area. Definitely worth the time to go the extra distance from the trail junction for the peak view. Keep in mind that it would take probably two very long days to do, and no water on the route at all after the stream crossings.